The North West region covers an area of over 14,000 square kilometres, with a population of 6.8 million people, making it the third largest region in the United Kingdom. The North West is the most densely populated region outside of London, with 480 persons per square kilometre.
In 2003 the region had a workforce of over 3 million and an economy worth £98 billion*, larger than that of the Republic of Ireland, Luxembourg, Portugal, Greece or Finland. Of the 3 million people working in the North West, approximately 12% work in the cultural sector, with over 62,000 people working in the heritage sector generating a turnover of over 6 billion.
The North West is a region of distinct landscapes and communities, ranging from highly developed urban centres to rural communities, attracting over 15 million tourists annually.
*figures taken from the North West Ecconomic Baseline Report produced by the Northwest Development Agency.